Retirement in Germany: This is how much you have to earn per hour to have a good pension!

What will your pension be like in your old age? Today’s earnings are the decisive basis for this! In the calculations below, the starting point is an employee who earns an average wage for 45 years. In Germany, this is currently € 21.21 gross per hour (with a working week of 37.7 hours). Calculated over an entire year, this amounts to 41,541 euros gross. In his old age he will receive a pension of 1538.55 euros gross/month.

Amount of pension in Germany depending on hourly wage

Someone who earns an average of 18 euros per hour (e.g. tiler, painter, varnisher) will later receive a pension of 1305.70 euros. If you earn 22 euros per hour (e.g. videographers, lighting technicians), you will receive a pension of 1595.86 euros per month (see table).

Hourly rate in 2021Pension after 45 years of work (Euro/month)

If you have earned only half of the average salary throughout your working life, you will receive only half of your pension. In this case you will be able to count on help from the Sozialamt.

Workers who earn slightly more (say 14 euros per hour, e.g. cleaners, truck drivers) can count on a pension of 1015.54 euros.

A minimum hourly wage that guarantees a decent pension

According to pension expert Johannes Steffen (, an hourly wage of 16.27 euros would be necessary for a single person to receive a pension above the support level.

Some occupations are below this level:

► A hairdresser in Cologne has a collective hourly rate of 10.10 euros. This results in a pension of about 733 euros after 45 years.

► Warehouse worker (Brandenburg): Hourly wage 12.82. Retirement: 930 euros.

Electrician (NRW): hourly wage 14.88. Retirement pension: 1080 euros.


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